If Obama Treated Koran Burning like the Ground Zero Mosque

Although he would not say a word about Iran’s human rights violations after Mahmoud Ahmadinejiad tortured protesters of the stolen presidential election last summer, Barack Obama brought the full weight of the presidential bully pulpit down against 50 people planning to burn the Koran this Saturday. Obama told George Stephanopoulos on Good Morning America this morning the would-be Koran-burners’ “stunt” is “completely contrary to our values as Americans…this country has been built on the notions of religious freedom and religious tolerance.”

That is an interesting about-face on the right of religious people to exercise the First Amendment. Less than a month ago, he declared his support for the Ground Zero Mosque, telling Muslims at an Iftar dinner:

Let me be clear: As a citizen and as president I believe that Muslims have the right to practice their religion as anyone else in this country. That includes the right to build a place of worship and a community center on private property in lower Manhattan, in accordance with local laws and ordinances.

He later said he was only reiterating their constitutional rights and “will not comment on the wisdom” of planting a victory mosque atop the graves of 3,000 jihad victims. But he felt no constraint commenting on the “wisdom” of a tiny Christian church burning the Muslims’ “holy” book. Although he showed enthusiasm for the First Amendment rights of Muslims, he tried to sic the local police on Pastor Jones, stating that he found the Dove World Outreach Center’s  rights “frustrating”:

Now, on the other hand, we are a government of laws. And so, we have to abide by those laws. And my understanding is that he can be cited for public burning. But that’s the extent of the laws that we have available to us.

Obama then returned to his familiar refrain that “part of this country’s history is people doing destructive or offensive or harmful things.” He made no call for state or local authorities to enforce all appropriate ordinances blocking a religious extremist from building the Ground Zero Mosque, as many assumed a patriotic president would have.

Had he reacted the same way, he may have told Stephanopoulos this morning that Pastor Jones and his flock have the constitutional right to burn whatever they like and left the matter at that, refusing to comment on its “wisdom.”

One could have expected a different response than the one he gave this morning if Obama believed the First Amendment did not apply to actions, but he believes flag desecration is a constitutionally protected right and voted against overturning that interpretation.

At a minimum, the president might have added a rebuke for the New Black Panther Party, which has issued threats against the church. A spokesman (of sorts) wanted “to warn Pastor Terry Jones that if he attempt [sic.] to burn this Koran, he’s going to incite a wrath and chastisement on himself that he will not be able to bear.” He continued in something approaching English, “I believe in peace, but if you aggress [sic.] me, I’m going to fight back.” Black Panthers promised to turn out “in numbers” Saturday. Perhaps Obama could have insisted that the imperiled Christians had the right to burn the Koran, however distasteful the action may be, and instruct the Panthers to show restraint. They know his Department of Justice will not prosecute them.

Obama’s defenders will say he is looking out for the well-being of American troops — and possibly American citizens at home. He said today the action could result in “serious violence in places like Pakistan or Afghanistan.” He is right to be concerned. Sixteen Muslims were killed and more than 100 injured after Newsweek published an erroneous story of Koran desecration by Michael Isikoff and John Barry in 2005. (Isikoff essentially defended the story in an exchange with this author less than two years ago.) Gen. David Petraeus has stated the weekend burning could “endanger” his men.

Obama saw worse consequences than that. “This is a recruitment bonanza for al-Qaeda,” he said. “This could increase the recruitment of individuals who’d be willing to blow themselves up in American cities, or European cities.”

Muslims have killed or threatened to kill people for filming documentaries critical of Islam or depicting Mohammed in a cartoon. Publicly igniting a stack of Korans will likely trigger a deadly response. However, creating Muslim violence did not stop Barack Obama from vowing to release up to 2,000 of photos of Americans abusing Muslim detainees last year. The massive and unnecessary disclosure was opposed by virtually every official in the military or the Defense Department, including Defense Secretary Robert Gates, Gen. Ray Odierno, Gen. Richard B. Myers, Gen. John Abizaid, and Gen. George W. Casey Jr. Even John Kerry admitted, “I do think it will be used as a propaganda tool and have some damaging impact.” As I wrote at the time, releasing images of Muslims suffering at American hands would be like distributing “thousands of al-Qaeda recruitment posters.” After Gates and Gen. Odierno protested in private, Obama eventually, abruptly, and erratically changed his mind.

In fact, al-Qaeda recruitment could certainly experience a boost if the world’s Muslims see a mosque erected on the grounds of a building damaged during the greatest act of jihad ever perpetrated on American soil. Clearly, the well-being of American soldiers is not Barack Obama’s first consideration.

These and many other differences in approach and tone indicate that President Obama has a profound problem with ordinary Americans, especially Christians. His Department of Homeland Security ranks pro-life, pro-family activists as a greater threat than Muslim terrorists. The collective weight of his aversion to Middle American values and his avid defense of Islamic interests has caused many Americans to believe he is a Muslim himself.

His record should convince no one he is a patriot.

About Ben Johnson

Ben Johnson is the editor of several conservative websites. A seasoned journalist, he has broken a host of news stories of national importance and written sizzling editorials that started the nation talking. A former talk show host, he has been a guest on The Michael Savage Show, Nothing But Truth with Crane Durham, Crosstalk on VCY America, The G. Gordon Liddy Show, The Bob Dutko Show, and scores of local programs. The Managing Editor of FrontPage Magazine (2004-2010) and previously its Associate Editor (2003-2004), he is the author of three books. He maintains his own website, TheRightsWriter.com, which you can view here. You can contact him here.
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10 Responses to If Obama Treated Koran Burning like the Ground Zero Mosque

  1. Pingback: Obama: Koran Burning, No; Flag Burning, Yes | Floyd Reports

  2. Corollary says:

    Time to ban and burn all queerans in the US. The USA was founded on God, the Bible and Christian values. FREEDOM OF RELIGION, not freedom from religion. Our Founding Fathers of This Nation were totally Godly (the one and only God, our Father, the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob), and from Day One of the birth of the United States of America, held prayer services and church services to honor and praise our One and Only God, not some idiot name mohammed! And once the government of the United States of America was established, congressional sessions opened and closed with prayer to our One and Only God,. and church services were held on Sundays, some lasting six hours or more with only praise and joy – no complaints (and no freaking muslims), in the Congressional halls.

  3. dpugsr says:

    Whny bother , though I support your position. my comments always fall into the bit bucket, so I guess my observations are not smart enough for you.

  4. BleuTopaz says:

    Lets cut to the chase America.Our leftwing -liberal fellow americans either out of ignorance or pure
    selfishness elected an Extreme Muslim Jihadist (Terrorist) for POTUS.Yes,I called the potus a
    terrorist.Anyone who intentionally subverts the constitution and the sovereignty of the United States
    and brings to bear the actions of a foreign court (u.n.) upon one or more of our United States is a
    Terrorist in The First Degree.Sometimes in life when Truth is seen,spoken or heard it can be
    horribly and excruciatingly painful.And the truth of the matter is now ,that all americans as a result of
    this profound error in judgment by the left to put a terrorist in the white house,we are all going to suffer horribly at the hands of this inept wicked monster.America stop being tolerant and appeasing your
    enemies.OH! Sleeping Giant,Wakeup! Standup!.Once Again.

  5. Mome4two says:

    I would like to raise the awareness of my fellow Americans. Approximately a year ago over in Afghanistan, the A-jeezera filmed a video of a Christian American Soldier giving a gift of a bible to an Afghan merchant after purchasing something from him. Due to Sharia law, it is death for afghans to convert from Muslim religion. So U. S. General Orders #1 prohiits Christian soliders from witnessing their religion. The U. S. Military at that time took translated bibles that had been donated by churches INTO CUSTODY AND BURNED THEM!
    Where was our president then? Why was it not a travesity to burn bibles?

  6. Pingback: Obama: Koran Burning, No; Flag Burning, Yes

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